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Christopher J. Lyons

Associate Professor

Photo: Christopher Lyons

Associate Chair, Graduate Director

SSCI 1076

Curriculum vitae


Ph.D. University of Washington, 2006

Research Interests

Crime, Law, and Social Control , Race and Ethnicity , Deviance and Social Control

Urban Sociology and Communities , Intergroup Relations , Hate Crime

Research Statement:

I study violence and social control as a window into the sources and consequences of social inequality. My research has developed around two principal areas:  1) race/ethnicity and socio-legal control, and 2) the spatial distribution of violence across communities. My work within these two areas explores themes relevant to urban and political sociology, stratification, and intergroup relations. I have tried to advance theoretical and empirical inquiries into the social construction and etiology of hate crime and racially motivated crime, race/ethnicity and crime clearance, the stratification consequences of criminal justice intervention, perceptions of racial discrimination, the political foundations of neighborhood inequality and violence, and domestic violence. Along with my colleagues Maria Velez (UNM) and Laurie Krivo (Rutgers), I am currently working on an NSF-funded project to collect a second wave of the National Neighborhoods and Crime Study (NNCS-2) that will provide unique two-panel crime and demographic data for neighborhoods across 91 large cities in the U.S.

Recent/Select Publications:

María B. Vélez, Christopher J. Lyons, and Wayne Santoro. 2015. “Black Political Opportunities and the Race-Violence Link: A Multilevel Analysis.” Social Problems (February)

Lyons, Christopher J. and Aki Roberts. 2014. “The Difference ‘Hate’ Makes in Clearing Crime: An Event History Analysis of Incident Characteristics.” Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice DOI: 10.1177/1043986214536663

María B. Vélez and Christopher J. Lyons. 2014. “Making or Breaking Neighborhoods:  Public Social Control and the Political Economy of Urban Crime.” Criminology and Public Policy 13(2): 225-235.

Mogford, Elizabeth A. and Christopher J. Lyons. 2014. “Village Tolerance of Abuse, Women’s Status, and the Ecology of Intimate Partner Violence in Rural Uttar Pradesh, India.” The Sociological Quarterly DOI: 10.1111/tsq.12067

Lyons, Christopher J., María B. Vélez, and Wayne Santoro. 2013. “Immigration, Neighborhood Violence, and City Political Opportunities.”  American Sociological Review 78(4): 604-32.

María B. Vélez, Christopher J. Lyons, and Blake Boursaw. 2012. “Neighborhood Housing Investments and Violent Crime in Seattle: 1981-2007.” Criminology 50(4): 1025-56.

Kreager, Derek, Christopher J. Lyons, and Zachary Hays. 2011. “Condos, Coffeeshops and Crime: Urban Revitalization and Seattle Crime Trends.” Social Problems 58(4): 615-39.

Lyons, Christopher J. and Becky Pettit. 2011. “Compounded Disadvantage: Race, Incarceration, and Wage Growth.” Social Problems 58(2): 257-80.

Aki Roberts and Christopher J. Lyons. 2011. “Hispanic Victims and Homicide Clearance by Arrest.” Homicide Studies 15(1): 48–73.

Hirsh, Beth and Christopher J. Lyons. 2010. “Perceiving Discrimination on the Job: Legal Consciousness, Workplace Context, and the Construction of Race Discrimination.” Law and Society Review 44 (2):269-98.

Pettit, Becky and Christopher J. Lyons. 2009.  “Incarceration, Employment and Wages over the Life Course.” Law and Society Review 43(4): 725-56.

Aki Roberts and Christopher J. Lyons. 2009. “Victim-Offender Racial Dyads and Clearance of Lethal and Non-Lethal Assault.” Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency 46(3): 301-326.

Lyons, Christopher J. 2008. “Defending Turf: Racial Demographics and Hate Crime against Blacks and Whites.” Social Forces 87(1): 357-385.    

Lyons, Christopher J. 2008. “Individual Perceptions and the Social Construction of Hate Crime.” Social Science Journal 45(1): 107-131.

Lyons, Christopher J. 2007. “Community (Dis)Organization and Racially Motivated Crime.” American Journal of Sociology 113(3): 815-63.

Lyons, Christopher J. 2006. “Stigma or Sympathy: Attributions of Fault to Hate Crime Victims and Offenders.” Social Psychology Quarterly 69(1): 39-59.